Airgas announced that effective 26 June 2006, or as contracts permit, its operating units will increase prices on packaged and bulk gases, and other products.
Prices will increase, on average, as follows:
- 10% - 15% for packaged and bulk industrial gases, including oxygen and nitrogen; specialty gases, medical gases, nitrous oxide, carbon dioxide, and dry ice
- 15%-20% for argon, hydrogen, helium, acetylene, and other fuel gases.
Airgas will also raise rental rates for cylinders and bulk tanks and other service charges and will continue to pass along higher pricing for hard goods and safety products. These changes are in addition to ongoing fuel and other surcharges implemented to recover specific costs.
Higher energy prices, especially electricity, have led to substantial increases in product costs as well as operating costs at Airgas fill plants and other facilities. The company also has seen higher prices for cylinders, bulk tanks, equipment, and welding consumables, due to higher stainless steel and non-ferrous metal prices, which all factored into the pricing actions.
"These actions are needed to address the rising costs," said Airgas CEO Peter McCausland. "In the last year, Airgas associates have worked very hard to meet our customers' needs during a period of strong demand and record utilisation rates in our industry. Please be assured we will do all we can to meet our customers' strong demand again this year under tight supply conditions."